Getting up-to-speed in the new reality...

Ah, so two weeks have elapsed of my new job, two weeks that skated between elation, boredom, fear, and frustration. It's a whole different world over here. Some people like it, some people don't. Me? I'm withholding judgment for now. I do like my team--they seem like quiet, competent, hardworking folks. They've been helpful to a total outsider in all senses of the word--an old unix + java wonk who's now playing in the world of C/C++ and Windows.

The code is a revelation--tight, Object Oriented, and thought out. These folks don't vomit out code the second an idea strikes (yes, I'm talking about myself there...). For one thing, C++ really doesn't benefit from that style--the separation of header implementation files makes you be more deliberate. The only downside there is it seems to encourage copy/paste coding because things are so darn...finicky. There's lots of macros/typedefs/etc to remember, and it's impossible to keep everything in your head without referencing MSDN.

Anyway, not all is roses--the tools have been killing me. Just getting ClearCase/ClearQuest installed and playing nice with Visual Studio 8 is still ongoing. Coming from Subversion, ClearCase seems like an answer in search of a question--locks everywhere, "branches" (called streams) on top of more branches.

I understand the reasoning behind most of it: We're working in Microsoft Certification hell. Basically, Microsoft runs a certification suite against the driver we produce, and then digitally signs that code. After that, if we change even one bit (yeah, I'm talking computer bits here--a single 1 or 0 in the compiled code), then that signature won't match and the driver is no longer certified. Not the optimal thing, but like I said, "...in the new reality".

I've had the dreaded Intellisense problem in Visual Studio 2005--I loaded-up the product .sln file (this is like an Eclipse "workspace") and then Visual C++ showed a message "Updating Intellisense". This never completes. I tried installing the Service Pack 1, but that installation failed about because it requires TWO GIGABYTES of HD space to install.

The main lesson here is: I probably should've reimaged my trusty Windows XP box before embarking on this journey. It doesn't like the Micro$oft tools very much. :D

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But hey, let's remember the intangibles--Good management chain, own office, regular hours, new problems to solve.

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